A Volatile Environment

In the Hawke’s Bay ‘water’ has become a dirty word whether you live in the affected Havelock North area or not.  The issues associated with our local water resources and supply has been reported on by media throughout the country and was the hot topic during the recent Local Body Elections. 

So it seems rather fitting that the Hawke’s Bay was hosting this year’s 63rd annual conference of the New Zealand Association of Resource Management, which TPG were proud to sponsor. Particularly because this year’s topic of ‘Connection, Challenge, Vitality: Building resilience, to thrive in a volatile environment’ could not be more suitable for the host region.

As a country we all need to understand and manage our natural resources better. We live in a volatile natural environment which is at the whim of climate and seasonal variations. In the long term, a number of regions are facing resilience challenges, particularly areas forecasted by NIWA to experience increased drying effects which will impact on a number of key agricultural and horticultural growing areas.

I am often puzzled and disappointed at what I see to be the ever growing divide between urban and rural New Zealanders. Water and the debate over ownership, use and sustainability of this resource creates polarising views within communities and more often than not becomes a political football. We are a country where primary production remains the backbone of our economy. The option of doing nothing and pointing the finger at primary production is not the answer. Add to that the prediction that world food production needs to double in the next fifty years and the mind boggles.

Some interest groups would prefer for land to be destocked and taken out of any production when the reality is that our future lies in harnessing our rich natural resources and working to identify sensible, sustainable and feasible solutions. Water storage is one of the solutions. Water storage presents a long-term sustainable water supply solution to store water during periods of high flow and over winter. 

The challenge for the future is working to build resilience through better management of our resources to create increased opportunities to improve production in a sustainable manner while ensuring that economic, environmental and community benefits are realised.  

We are proud of our work as property advisors and planners who specialise in natural resource management and helping our clients to make better property decisions. Whether that is securing land for riparian management, soil conservation, developing open space opportunities or water storage projects, if you need advice on your next project then please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.